Run training diary, week 7: Do it anyway

You may be familiar with Jocko Willink’s signature phrase, discipline equals freedom. This is not about the freedom to do whatever you want, it’s about the freedom to alleviate the stress of choices. Believe it or not, decision fatigue is real. We make hundreds or thousands of decisions every day, from whether we get out of bed facing the bed or facing away from it to which sock to put on first to which route to take to work and what time to leave to what to eat and when and so on. By the end of the day, we start making some poor decisions because we’ve made so many decisions the whole day.

But when you put something on the calendar and you stick to your calendar, you free yourself from having to make decisions surrounding it.

The toddler was toddlering hard this week. We went to my parents’ to see if we could get a little more sleep, and we did not. I had five miles on the calendar for Wednesday, and my family tried to convince me not to worry about running five miles. But when the calendar says five miles, you do five miles. You don’t have to want to do it. You don’t have to be awesome at it. You just have to do it.

Same for the three I really really didn’t want to run on Thursday. But it was on the calendar, so I ran three miles.

And it’s doing it anyway — maybe even especially when you don’t want to — that allow you (me) to improve at the things you want to do better.

We added a run this week, actually, so it was three miles on Tuesday and Thursday, with a five-miler in between.

The long run this week, though, was seven miles, an increase in distance over last week, and of the seven weeks we’ve been at this, only one longer run — a four-miler in week 2 — has been at a faster pace. And the best thing was the way it went: The slowest mile? Mile 1. The second slowest mile? Mile 2. The fastest mile? Mile 7. And it was very consistent: The average pace was 12:34; the slowest mile was 13 seconds slower than the average, the fastest was eight seconds faster.

I explained all the measuring in the Week 1 post.

Starting weight: 173.8

Date Prescribed Actual Time Pace Avg HR Max HR Sleep Recovery Strain (run only)
8/4 3 3.09 37:51 12:15 146 209 50 55 13.4
8/5 5 5.01 1:10:46 14:08 151 194 59 48 17
8/6 3 3.01 40:52 13:34 143 168 43 21 13
8/8 7 7.02 1:28:19 12:34 153 205 63 68 18
8/9 2-3 2.7 33:49 12:32 130 159 60 53 11.8
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